June 24: Grand Design

The Task

Answer a question. The question is very materialistic in nature and not in the least productive, however, it is a question I find interesting.

If money was not an object, what would my house be like?


Why This Challenge?

I don’t know really. It is a common question asked, and it is fun to ponder. That is kind of it.


Execution.

I brainstormed what rooms I would like, such as a library, an office and a sauna. (I know, extravagant, but unlimited money plus health benefits blah blah blah). I then went into more detail, such as a walk-in pantry. I did not get into tiny details, such as colour and materials as preferences for them change seasonally. It was a fairly boring design, the main components being:

  • Surrounded by rainforest, or at the very least a lot of trees. However, still within 20 minutes’ drive from a major town.
  • Three floors total, the third of which consisting of only the bedroom and ensuite.
  • Completely self-reliant, off-grid and eco-friendly.
  • A personal sauna.
  • An edible and ideally beautiful garden.
  • Very open plan, with lots of glass outer walls.
  • Balconies.

What I’ve Learned.

I have learned that dreaming big is not only fun, but it sets an image into your mind for something to achieve and motivate you.

Also, in direct contrast to June 12th’s theme of anti-materialism, it is enjoyable to imagine yourself in a luxury house.


 

June 12th: Less is more.

You only lose what you cling to. -Buddha

The 12th challenge: De-clutter my room.


Why this Challenge?

Minimalism is a thing with design, having simple but impactful outcomes, however, the term can be used toward anything. One aspect people use it for is consumerism. In the extreme, some people live with only 100 items. That sounds like a lot at first but just think for a second. Plates, cutlery, shoes, clothes, pens, sheets, and towels, everything in their life. I don’t want that, but I think how attached we, as humans, get to our ‘stuff’ is crazy, as it can really hold you back. So, I make a sort of semi-regular habit of throwing out everything I don’t need. All of the things I own that are just taking up space.

As a result of this practice, which started as a necessity when I moved out of home, I have fewer things in my life. I find things in my room easier, as I don’t have random stuff filling up places it shouldn’t be, Additionally, going through belongings has the side effects of knowing where it all is, but also gives you a time for organizing it in a way your brain understands intuitively.

However, I have not done the practice in a while.


Execution.

Went through my stuff, and selected the things I didn’t need. I then offered my housemates anything from the pile.

It is also good to note that while doing this, it is essential to embody a sort of ‘I don’t need it’ mindset. (Oh, and not get toooo distracted by all of the memories) A rule I have to help myself embody said mindset is that I am only allowed one sentimental item from each event. So, if I had a shell, as well as a souvenir keyring from a vacation that has never seen the light of day, I would have to prioritize which means more to me in regards to the holiday.

What did I throw out? Well, the main few things were a flask, an incense burner, old hair product, an alarm clock I never used and a face scrubber. They don’t sound like much, but there is a lot less clutter in my room as a result. (Both the physical room and my mental model of it)


What I’ve Learned.

For start, I have learned that doing the practice makes the practice less crucial. Not in the ‘throwing out stuff gives you less stuff’ way, although definitely that way, but more in the change of mindset. I have collected less stuff as a result of throwing things out, because I know how I work, I know what items are important to me, and I have less of a desire for items.

That doesn’t mean I don’t buy stuff. My brain is quite adept at convincing itself that one of its ‘wants’ is actually quite logical to buy. For example, I tend to buy the most expensive, or at least a more expensive than necessary Item because ‘it will last longer’ or ‘it is an investment’. An example would be my phone, a Galaxy s7.

But nonetheless, I am aware of it, and I am attempting prevention.